80. Schisandrin B-induced increase in cellular glutathione level and protection against oxidant injury are mediated by the enhancement of glutathione synthesis and regeneration in AML12 and H9c2 cells

Po Yee Chiu, Kam Ming Ko

Department of Biochemistry, The Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, Clear Water Bay, Hong Kong SAR, China

To define the relative role of reduced glutathione (GSH) synthesis and regeneration in schisandrin B (Sch B)-induced increase in cellular GSH level and the associated cytoprotection against oxidative challenge, the effects of L-buthionine-[S,R]-sulfoximine (BSO, a specific inhibitor of γ-glutamate cysteine ligase (GCL)) and 1,3-bis(2-chloroethyl)-1-nitrourea (BCNU, a specific inhibitor of glutathione reductase (GR)) treatments or their combined treatment were examined in control and Sch B-treated AML12 and H9c2 cells, without and/or with menadione intoxication. Both BSO and BCNU treatments reduced cellular GSH level in AML12 and H9c2 cells, with the effect of BSO being more prominent. The GSH-enhancing effect of Sch B was also suppressed by BSO and BCNU treatments, with the effect of the combined treatment with BSO and BCNU being semi-additive. While Sch B treatment increased the GR but not GCL activity in AML12 and H9c2 cells, it increased the cellular cysteine level. BSO treatment also suppressed the Sch B-induced increase in GR activity. BSO or BCNU treatment per se did not cause any detectable cytotoxic effect, as assessed by lactate dehydrogenase leakage, but the combined treatment with BSO and BCNU was cytotoxic, particularly in H9c2 cells. The cytotoxic effect of BSO and BCNU became more apparent following the menadione challenge. The cytoprotection afforded by Sch B pretreatment was partly suppressed by BSO or BCNU treatment, or completely abrogated by the combined treatment with BSO and BCNU. In conclusion, the results indicate that the cytoprotective action of Sch B is causally related to the increase in cellular GSH level, which is likely mediated by the enhancement of GSH synthesis and regeneration.

Keywords : Schisandrin B, glutathione, cysteine, γ-glutamate cysteine ligase, glutathione reductase, AML12, H9c2, menadione